After finally seeing 3D stereoscopic games in action, I now know what all the excitement is about. Playing a game with the "3D" feature turned on delivers on the promise set up by movies like The Creature From the Black Lagoon 3D. Movies that still to this day disappoint me when I think back to how they were not 3D at all.
Enough about childhood disappointments. This week Samsung announced the SyncMaster 2233RZ, the company's first stereoscopic 3D-compatible monitor. Basically, with the right 3D graphics hardware (Nvidia 8, 9, or 10 series); glasses (the display will be bundled with them for the first few months); and games; you'll be able to play games with added depth perception. The effect as I've witnessed it is very convincing.
Samsung claims that the 2233RZ can display 5:4 and 4:3 images at accurate aspect ratios without enlargement or distortion. It's also included an off timer feature that enables the monitor to shut down at set times and a shortcut button that allows you to switch from 3D to 2D mode quickly.
Where a typical monitor's refresh rate tops out at 60Hz, the 2233RZ goes to 120. This means the monitor should be capable of smoother motion not only while gaming but while watching movies as well.
According to Samsung, more than 350 games are "3D compatible" and ready to be experienced, but that number is actually higher as most PC games are compatible. You'll need a Nvidia stereoscopic-compatible graphics card, the Samsung 2233RZ (editor's "not enough time note": there is another display from Viewsonic that is also compatible, but I haven't had a chance to see it yet; keep watching this space), and finally the 3D shutter glasses to make it all work.
Samsung says the 3D glasses are designed so you can wear them and prescription glasses at the same time and that was the case when I used them. Adjustable nose pieces are also included for different nose sizes. The glasses are powered via USB, and according to Samsung can last an entire week without a recharge.
The Samsung 2233RZ will be available in April for a suggested retail price of $399.